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Arachnology - Science topic

Spiders and its close relatives
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I am interested in developing a list of foundations that provide grants for young researchers' projects, mainly in Evolution, Behavior, or Arachnology.
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The reason for starting this discussion is a very arrogant, abusive, hateful (and of course anonymous) review that we received for our manuscript, submitted in Arachnology https://bioone.org/journals/arachnology lately. Almost all of the reviewer’s comments started with phrases like: very boring; useless; non-essential; a fairy tale as for example “Alice in Wonderland”; limited experience in spider taxonomy; very limited knowledge about spider taxonomy by the authors, or even “preoccupied with nationalism” ??? Apart from us, the reviewer abuses also some other authors that we cited in our manuscript.
The point here is not about positive or negative review, but for the ethics in peer reviewing and the language of the reviewer. And my question is should the editors accept such nonsense as a valid review and send it to the authors at all? In many high impact Journals like https://plos.org/resource/ethics-for-peer-reviewers/ , there are reviewer’s guidelines and respectful and professional language is explicitly required. Although such guidelines are missing in Arachnology, or at least I couldn’t find them, I still think that such hateful remarks should not be accepted by the editor. It’s interesting to hear the colleagues’ opinions about this.
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... when I have to deal with a bad and/or unethical peer-review, I always re-read this brilliant post by @Stephen B Heard :
Hope it can help you to frame a smart reply that by-passes the ad hominem attacks—or simply cheer you up.
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I have a lot of spider pictures - I suspect several of them are cobweb spiders.
Here's one I just saw this afternoon, the second day it has been warm lately.  
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Martha:
Thanks Martha.
You may like to have a look at this link for identification:
Best
Syed
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The domestic house spider is a very common guest in human dwellings, but I found little literature about its biology. Is there any research?
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Sebastian:
Some basic facts about Tegenaria domestica could be found in this link and references therein:
Best
Syed
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Have a prosperous new year to everyone! What spider species is this found in a commercial swimming resort in Jasaan, Misamis Oriental, Philippines. Please help in identification
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It is a cosmophasis sp.
See this pdf that maybe help identify the species.
Best regards
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Please help identify this species. 
Captured from an island of South-Central Bangladesh located in the Meghna-Bay of Bengal confluence. 
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I agree with Vincent and Tharindu. It is definitely Olios lamarcki (Latreille, 1806). 
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This is water mite from Carpathians spring (Chornohora massif, 1210 m above sea level). I've never seen something similar. Help, please, with identification of its may be order or genera. Sorry for the poor quality photos.
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Thank! Its really Bdellidae. But its water species or terrestrial?
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This spider was photograph  in Abruzzo in localities near Majella mountains 400 m. on sea level. 
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Zoropsis spinimana (Zoropsidae)
Regards,
Roman
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Evidently  this specimen is misidentified as a palaearctic Araneus alsine.
Thank you for your help.
Joe Belicek, Edmonton,  Alberta, Canada
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If the specimen is, like notated, from French Guiana, there are not 3045, but 100 species of Araneidae. All the same, of course you are right, Dimitry - based on one poor foto it is more gambling than determinating.
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I have several containers of missing sector orb weaver juveniles and I want to keep them alive obviously. How do I feed them besides chopping up insects and sprinkling it over them?
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Try to get some Drosophila flies. Most of the genetic labs use them in the classroom. They are easy to rear, and spiders love them!
Cheers,
Camilo
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I know that the number of eggs can be extremely variables, from 1 (some cave-dwelling species) up to hundreds. However, I don't known if an estimation for the highest number has ever been put forward. 
Also, a reference pointing out the species which can lay the highest number of cocoons would be equally useful.
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Dear Stefano, and dear Jens,
Perhaps I'm one of the guys who may outnumber this first interesting observation.
Higgins (2002, Oikos, 99, 377-385) has closely studied the clutch size of Nephila maculata, a species well-known for the (very) large size of the females. 
"These spiders lay very large egg sacs (all  > 3000 eggs)" (page 380)
Still more precisley (page 382), Linden Higgins has shown that: "Female fecundity (number of eggs laid per clutch) is a function of prelaying mass".
N eggs = 1459.2 (mass) − 344.22, with R2 = 0.99.
The mass of the largest female sampled by L.H. was 6.9g (!) and so, it may be easily calculated that the clutch size of this female was equivalent to 9724 eggs. This value may be checked as a real one with the help of the Figure 5 (page 382, too).
I have attached the paper.
My two cents! All the best, Philippe.
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Can I used another way neither ground traps?
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As far as I have read from journals, 100 spiders of identical species are at least needed to extract its venom from the venom glands which will then be homogenized followed by centrifugation to obtain the supernatant which is considered as the crude venom extract.
I am doubting if I'll be able to collect that number of spiders. So, I am asking if it is fine to collect spiders lower than that number, guaranteed that I will still obtain an efficient data. Kindly support your answers by citing some references. Thank you!
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Another way to obtain and characterize spider venoms is to raise the spiders and "milk" them for their venom.  This avoids some of the hard work of dissection and extraction, but has other problems.  Since you can milk a spider many times, it increases the toxin yield and avoids some of the problems of enzymatic damage to the toxins while dissecting and processing the glands.  SpiderPharm does this regularly and so the website attached is a good place to start.
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From the breeding period of spiders up to the full growth of the offsprings, do you have any idea what would be the approximate duration of the entire process? Specifically, those spiders belonging to the Araneidae family.
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Hello Dear
Spiders need to be fed only once every 3-7 days.
diagram of tank to rear spiders inMoisture is a more critical factor for the survival of spiders in captivity. One of the ways to keep the container moist without drowning the spider is to place a small potted plant inside the cage; another way is to place a ball of cotton wool or a folded filter/toilet paper which can be wetted with a few drops of water every day. Best regards
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Is there any report of two pairs of adanal setae (paraanal) in Holostaspella genus (Macrochelidae)?
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Dear Sayed,
I'm not aware of a duplication of the paranal setae in Holostaspella, or any other Mesostigmata for that matter. They are usually very stable setae as they appear in the larva of mesostigmatan mites. Another possibility is that one of the Jv setae have moved close to the paranals. A sketch would help others judge this; alternatively, an expert on Macrochelidae would be a good person to ask about how unique the character state is and its significance. That's likely the best approach.
You will also need multiple specimens showing the feature. If it's just one specimen then it could just be an odd individual rather than a morphological feature indicative of a new species.
Kind regards, Owen.
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Considering the minimal amount of venom that could be extracted from spiders, is it fine to collect then pool together the venoms of several spiders with the same species? If yes, is it necessary to catch them on the same location?
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Recently I took some photos of this spider in a cave in the northern Peruvian Andes. Can anyone identify the Species, Genus or Family?
Thank you very much !
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Hello dear Stefan Ziemendorff  the specimen of pictures is not a spider, this specimen is a harvestmen an arachnid that belongs to Opiliones Order.
Best regards
Cristian Martínez
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It is from Struma river valley (SW Bulgaria).
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I guess it is graecus as it is the only one in S Bulgaria.
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I am looking to pool together any contemporary spider sleep studies to use as background research for a study defining sleep in spiders. This may include comparative studies across various species. A clear definition of sleep in spiders will make for a useful variable in various follow up studies on spider behavior, involving communication, social behavior, personality, foraging and others! Any information is appreciated.
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Thanks Blaine for the comment as I do believe you and many of us have observed what appears to be non-responsive times in many spiders, but then rapid responses.  Some form of 'neurological slowdown (sleep?)' may be involved.  Syed, the webs are certainly amazing in their construction, and yes there are still many unexplained and unexplored areas of spider biology that will provide interesting insights.
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Hi, i need occurrence data for spider genus Loxosceles, but i cant found this information.
Thanks a lot
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Dr. Canyon, while that is a very useful type of studies for some diseases/infections, it is actually a very bad thing to do in this situation.  First, there are several studies that show the reported 'necrotic spider bites' are not spider bites (Staph aureus/MRSA infections often) as they occur in geographic regions where there are no brown recluses (except the occasional spider that moves along with household furniture).  So please do not use a general characteristic of necrosis to try to determine the distribution of recluses.  Second, most of the Loxosceles species are not known to bite and therefore the species in the southwest and parts of Mexico would not show up.   If you want, I would love to work with you on the 'recluse' problem in Hawaii (or elsewhere), which can be done by asking the public to bring in recluses (the news media love to publicize it).
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Hello,
I was looking at different insects and arachnids and noticed some that had bright blue fluorescent eyes when excited with UV (@ 360-380 nm) equipped with a 410 nm longpass filter. Does this mean that the fluorescent eyes ensure they can see within those wavelengths or is it due to the various pigments present in their eyes and some just so happen to be fluorescent? Not entirely sure on this one. 
Answers are much appreciated 
Thank you 
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Some spiders (especially Lycosidae and Pisauridae) and some insects have reflective eyes.  The tapetum in these families can reflect light so they see better at night, and the guanine that covers the tapetum is flourescent.  
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I am planning to go for creating a transgenic spider. Can anyone help me by giving the methodology involved in the Target vector and helper plasmid construction. 
I will be very grateful if someone can bit elaborate on this line.
Best,
Ranjitha
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Has a transgenic spider already been done? I guess doing one is going to be really tough. I would recommend that you first search the regular transposons that are used to make transgenics in other insects (PiggyBac, Minos, etc), and  try to guess which one, if any, will likely work on spiders. 
For example PiggyBac have been used in insects and in mammalian cells, so it might work. Then get a GFP tagged vector and the transposase.  (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11804796) Finally, try to inject the mix into spider eggs at the preblastoderm, successful microinjections have been done in spiders. stage. http://dev.biologists.org/content/139/15/2655
Sounds like an exiting experiment to do. Good luck
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I wanted to observe its natural activities in the wild. I am very interested in its taxonomy and others observable behaviors/characters.
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Nephila are common both in secondary and primary rainforests where these remains on the Philippines. Moreover, some species can be also found in towns where they build nets on electric lines. Mindanao, for example.
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Which of them is your identification on these photos?
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Unfortunately the taxonomic characters presented for differentiation of two species are not reliable and decisive.
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This spider is very common around the home of my daughter in Divinópolis, Minas Gerais, Brasil.
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I agree, with the picture is hard to see but as suggested above, I believe it belongs to Phoneutria. The genus is characterized by a prolateral dense 'brush' of hairs (technically called scopula) on the pedipalps (both on the tibiae and tarsi). From what I can tell on the picture, this one may have it. As for the species, even with a well preserved specimen, it is tricky to know and for certainty it is often needed the inspection under the microscope, particularly focusing on the genital structure. Coloration may be useful; however, there is considerable variation and thus is not very reliable. Currently there are eight valid species in the genus with most having a relatively wide distribution. I may be mistaken, but I believe most Phoneutria species may be potentially venomous to humans.
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Is it possible to multiply spider fauna in laboratory for the management of insects?
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Mass rearing of spiders is thought to be or impossible or inefficient. Control based on spider populations  can be obtained by augmentation in the field.  To get a higher density of spiders, enrichement of hiding and web making facilities as well as overwintering spots can be part of the management. Because when these are limited, cannibalism and migration will keep densities proportional. 
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The spider has unusual dark dorsal abdominal line and brown and green thorax.
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now that I can enlarge photo, I'd also suggest to take a look at Nigma walckenaeri. Known european Sparassidae usually are not that green when being juveniles and it does not look like a Thomisidae anymore.
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Pardosa altitudis, Leucage celbesiana, Neoscona rumpfi, Theridion manjathar, Pardosa cribata, Erigon atra, Lepthymphantes tenuis
If you have worked with any of these exotic spiders, I am compiling a meta-analysis of functional response curves and would be helpful to know their size (specifically length). The data for the size of these spiders seems unavailable in any publications I have seen or databases. Thank you!
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Erigone atra: 1.8-2.8mm
Pardosa cribrata: up to 7.9mm
refer to the links for a list of synonyms and correct spelling. The first description + following works can be downloaded from each species page.
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which genus?
intertidal rocks, Karachi
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It is definitely a Salticidae but it is difficult to identify the genus based on a picture. Perhaps these web pages may shed some light into the matte:
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Does anybody help me to identify the spider from the dauber wasp Sceliphron destillatorius breeding camera ? Two of three species I identified, and for other just suppose that it can be from woolf spiders. Is'nt it? Body length 4-5 mm.
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Hi Andrey
In my opinion on the photo you have:
3xAraniella sp.-without specimen it is udeterminable to species level, however A.cucurbitina is very likely,
2x Salticus zebraneus
1xPseudicius encarpatus
1xEvarcha falcata
1x Anyphaena accetuata 100%
2x Anyphaena accentuata 80%(this one without opisthosoma, and another lying on the back)
Regards
Tomasz Rutkowski
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Greetings. I'm just preparing a sci. note about spider predation on Uropygy, but I haven't found any valuable information. I'd greatly appreciate if you can suggest some literature, since my search in data bases have been unsuccessful. Thanks in advance
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Muchas gracias por tu respuesta, estimado Alexander. Ya revisé tu nota y contactaré a Luis de Armas y Rolando para que me den su opinión acerca de lo que estoy escribiendo. Estamos en contacto, abrazos de regreso
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Based on my current field experience I can say that simpler methods (eg. netting, soil traps) worked with only "accidental results". There were only a few cases when more than 3-5 spiders were caught in one sample. It has to be noticed that they weren't target group so far.
If any of you works with this group and can mention an efficient sampling method I would be extremely grateful! :-)
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In addition to the methods described above, a D-vac (modified garden vacuum) can be a very efficient tool to collect spiders. This method enables you to catch spiders from almost all strata (from ground dwelling wolf spiders up to spiders walking on twigs). It is also one of the best methods to quantify spider densities by sampling a defined area.
See for example (http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1570-7458.2010.01094.x/full) for a critical discussion of suction sampling.
Although some companies offer D-vac's for arthropod sampling, it is relatively easy (and often cheaper) to modify a garden vacuum into a powerful tool for field ecologists.
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Somebody could identify this spider. It is a Latrodectus species. What kind of Latrodectus is it? I fotographed it in  Lybia, Marsa El Brega, 16th January 2015. I think this is new spec. for Lybia (probably even for North Africa?)?
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 Hi Attila,
Any chance you collected it? I would certainly be interested in taking a closer look. At this time, I would say that live photographs alone (as attractive as your photos are) is not sufficient evidence for novel records of Latrodectus species. They are far too variable in overall color pattern and there are too many regions that are not well collected. We need more specimens in public research collections. Fresh specimens from a place like Libya would indeed be rare and illuminating. 
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I would do an investigation about spiders in the city of Puebla, Mexico.In this Project I will identify the spiders until the gener. I already look for it but I didn´t find it. Someone can help me with this?      
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Thanks!
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I have began to identify an old sample of spiders conserved in glycol for a short study. I would like to use common names in the taxonomic list besides the scientific ones and I am looking for a list of accepted names for the species. The key I am using provides only scientific names. I would be thankful is someone could help me.
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I guess Fauna Europaea Project will come up with spiders of Europe soon. However currently, World Spider Catalog (wsc.nmbe.ch) would be good choice.
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Hi, guys. I want to perform a calibrated divergent dating with fossils, How should I reasonably choose the fossil calibrations and how many should I choose. By the way, I am working with spider phylogeny.
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Hi Mingxin,
Try to use calibrated points for several parts of your tree. At least 4 nodes must be used, but if you have more, use many more.
You can find a complete list of fossil spiders here:
Cheers,
Camilo
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We are facing a problem when we are using Hoyer's medium some air bubble will establish under cover slips after short time and consequence of that we are going to lose the specimen. 
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Visikol and Hoyer's Solution, I receive this information from Tom Villani , and chemist expert:  "To prepare the samples, typically we soak in Visikol for 20-30 mins (small specimens prepared right on slide), sometimes overnight for large samples. Gentle heating on a hotplate will help remove bubbles and speed up penetration of Visikol into the specimen. At that point, if desired, adding arabic gum dissolved in water to the cleared sample containing Visikol and mount. We typically use 1:1 volume of Visikol : saturated arabic gum solution." This information comes from Tom Villani.    He is doing studying the situation.   Hoyer still for me the best media, as long as you ring with a glyptal or a similar product the cover slide.  Furthermore,  as soon as  your mounted mite specimens are dry and ready for  study, take (600 to 1200 dpi) photos in DIC and Phase contrast (40 - 100X), and safe the images in association with your specimen.   
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see above
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Depending on the instar, I have been successful  feeding them flightless Drosophila.
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.
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The World Spider Catalog, by Norman I. Platnick ]
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Interest in spider taxonomy of Indian spiders
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Nice to hear from you as a budding arachnologist. Spider diversity in Kerala is outstanding. Best wishes for your research.
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few specialists in Libya who can identify spiders, scorpions, mites, ticks ,...... etc,
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I have been working on the ecology of arid environment arachnids, particularly spiders, camel spiders and scorpions. And the few samples I have seen from Libya proved to be very interesting. I would be very interesting in collaborating with someone who can obtain collecting permits, and would be willing to implement standardized sampling protocols in Libyan habitats.